hu·​man·​i·​tar·​i·​an | \ hyü-ˌma-nə-ˈter-ē-ən How to pronounce humanitarian (audio) , yü-\

Definition of humanitarian

: a person promoting human welfare and social reform : philanthropist recognized as a great humanitarian for her work to end world hunger

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Other Words from humanitarian

humanitarian adjective
humanitarianism \ hyü-​ˌma-​nə-​ˈter-​ē-​ə-​ˌni-​zəm How to pronounce humanitarianism (audio) , yü-​ \ noun

Examples of humanitarian in a Sentence

She has been recognized as a great humanitarian for her efforts to end world hunger.
Recent Examples on the Web Liberals were humanitarians; conservatives were rationalists. New York Times, "In Today’s World, Is It Possible to Be an Idealist?," 18 Oct. 2019 There's some people that are like natural humanitarians. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "Cardi B on Feeling Like Lizzie McGuire, Taking Risks in Fashion, and What She and Bernie Sanders Have in Common," 10 Oct. 2019 During her surprise meet-up, the humanitarian handed out VIP passes to the promising kids. Heran Mamo, Billboard, "Selena Gomez & the Playground Scene: Her 8 Cutest Moments With Kids," 13 Sep. 2019 L’Oréal is devoted to encouraging self-worth and inclusivity, and Davis' incredible career on the big screen and as a humanitarian is an extension of that message. Maya Allen, Marie Claire, "Viola Davis Is Named the New Face of L’Oréal Paris," 11 Sep. 2019 For decades, Peter Dalglish, 62, held a distinguished reputation as one of Canada’s most esteemed and accomplished humanitarians devoted to the wellbeing of poor children. Fox News, "Former Canadian UN worker and renowned humanitarian sentenced in Nepal for raping boys," 10 July 2019 Threatening humanitarians with felonies and prison time for helping migrants survive in the desert is part of the Trump strategy to deter immigration. Miriam Jordan, New York Times, "An Arizona Teacher Helped Migrants. Jurors Couldn’t Decide if It Was a Crime.," 11 June 2019 In his opinion, Ross Cellino is a great guy and a humanitarian who gives away a ton of money. Kaitlyn Tiffany, Vox, "The story behind the best-known local jingle in America," 8 Aug. 2019 Ten years ago today, the world lost a gifted artist and extraordinary humanitarian. Chris Eggertsen, Billboard, "Michael Jackson Estate Releases Statement on 10th Anniversary of Singer's Death," 25 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'humanitarian.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of humanitarian

1843, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for humanitarian

Time Traveler

The first known use of humanitarian was in 1843

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Statistics for humanitarian

Last Updated

18 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Humanitarian.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for humanitarian


How to pronounce humanitarian (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of humanitarian

: a person who works to make other people's lives better


hu·​man·​i·​tar·​i·​an | \ hyü-ˌma-nə-ˈter-ē-ən How to pronounce humanitarian (audio) , yü-\

Kids Definition of humanitarian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who works to improve the lives and living conditions of other people



Kids Definition of humanitarian (Entry 2 of 2)

: relating to or characteristic of people who work to improve the lives and living conditions of other people humanitarian efforts

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